Dining outdoors doesn’t get much better than summertime. Sure, those sunny spring days and crisp fall afternoons are great, but when the long, warm evenings spent sharing a meal turn into cool nights over cocktails, there’s sure to be memories made. Here’s a handful of places you can pass plates and enjoy the heat of the summer. Cheers!
Summer wouldn’t be summer without a rooftop brunch. Head to Ambar for your fix of new heights, ice-cold cocktails and a slew of sweet and savory midmorning plates. Whether you’re craving soup and salad, or looking for a waffle covered in strawberries, chocolatey Nutella and fresh whipped cream, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. // 2901 Wilson Blvd., Arlington
When the era of safe social distancing dawned on local restaurants, Bazin’s on Church wasted no time making their outdoor seating area look picture-perfect. Enjoy the restaurant’s Modern American cuisine while under the evening lights of the back patio, and toast to a return to happy hours once again. // 111 Church St. NW, Vienna
Any excuse to eat pizza is a good one, but forget enjoying it on your couch at home. Head to Ciao Osteria’s outdoor space for wood-fired pizza, fresh antipasti and crave-worthy pasta dishes. Don’t resist the urge to pair your favorite dish with a glass of wine too. // 14115 Saint Germain Drive, Centreville
Nothing beats a good deli sandwich on a hot summer day, even if it’s paired with a cup of soup (yes, we mean it!). Head to Leesburg and get yourself a classic BLT, an order of the MacDaddy Meatloaf or just a South Street Hoagie to enjoy outside. If you bring the kids, they can dine outside with a PB&J or grilled cheese too. // 203 Harrison St., Leesburg
You may not have had that family picnic yet this summer, but you can still enjoy some local barbecue, smoked and prepared just for you. Make a “pit stop” in Sterling for a sliced brisket sandwich, a half- or full rack of ribs, or even just your own serving of macaroni and cheese. Wash it down with a beer as the sun drops below the trees, just like at home. // 46230 Cranston St., Sterling